Living By Faith Blog


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What Thirsts Does Jesus Satisfy?

Water From Bottle from Microsoft Publisher ClipartWhat Thirsts Does Jesus Satisfy?

In John 6:35 Jesus makes an astonishing promise —

I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.

I believe this verse teaches that Jesus Christ will satisfy all our heart-thirsts.

God has given us heart-thirsts for joy and pleasure and meaning.  And Jesus Christ is so glorious that when we come to him and believe in him, all our heart-thirsts can be satisfied — in knowing him.


But a while back someone disagreed.  They said Jesus was not promising to satisfy all our thirsts, but just our spiritual thirsts.

They thought that if someone thirsted for spiritual things like forgiveness and assurance of salvation, Jesus would satisfy those thirsts.

But they did not think coming to Jesus would satisfy thirst for something like marriage, or friends.

They were not denying that Jesus could give someone a spouse or friends.  But they did not think Jesus was promising to satisfy those desires in himself, without a spouse or friends.

So Which Is It?

Is Jesus promising that when we come to him and believe in him, he will satisfy all our heart-thirsts?  Or just our spiritual heart-thirsts?

This is important.  Because if he promises to satisfy all our heart-thirsts in himself, then no matter what our circumstances, we can still be fully satisfied by coming to him.

But if he promises only to satisfy our spiritual heart-thirsts in himself, then even if we come to Christ we could have other heart-thirsts that are still unsatisfied.

So which is it?  Here are reasons I think Jesus is promising to satisfy all our heart-thirsts.

Jesus Gives No Exceptions

Read John 6:35 again —

I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.

Jesus promises that whoever comes to him and believes in him “shall never thirst.”  Not — “shall never thirst for spiritual things.”  Just — “shall never thirst.”  No exceptions.  So the most natural way to understand this is that Jesus is promising that we shall never have any more thirsts of any kind.

This does not mean that after one time of coming to Jesus I will never thirst again.  The words “comes” and “believes” are in the present tense.  It’s as we keep coming to and believing in Jesus, that he will keep satisfying all our heart-thirsts in himself.

This also does not mean that if you thirst for friends, Jesus will give you friends.   He can do that.  It would be good to ask him to do that.

But the point is not that Jesus gives the bread of life — as if this was outside of him.  It’s that Jesus is the bread of life.  He promises that if you come to him, he will satisfy your hunger for friends and for everything else in himself.

Asaph Experienced This

Asaph wrote many of the psalms.  And in Psalm 73 he describes a time when all his desires were satisfied in God himself —

Whom have I in heaven but you?  And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you. (Psalm 73:25)

It’s not just that God satisfied Asaph’s spiritual desires.  It’s that who God is was so satisfying to Asaph that he desired, hungered for, and thirsted for — nothing on earth.  All his thirsts were quenched — in God himself.

David Experienced This

I love Psalm 16:11 —

In your presence there is fullness of joy; at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

What would it mean to experience fullness of joy?  It means your heart is full of joy.  And if your heart is full, then every emptiness, every thirst, every longing — is satisfied.

And this is what we can experience in God’s presence.  When we come to Jesus and believe in him, we will have times when we so see and feel his radiance, his love, and his nearness that our every thirst is satisfied with joy in him.

How Can We Experience This?

Right now I’m not experiencing fullness of joy in God’s presence.  As I’ve written these words, I’ve had some tastes.  But I need more.  Maybe that’s also true of you.  So what can we do?

Jesus promises —

I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst. (John 6:35)

So here’s what I’m going to do right now —

  • Come to Jesus.  Just as I am.  Confessing any sin, unbelief, worry, and pride.  Trusting his death to forgive me.  Asking for his power to help me see and feel the truth of who he is — so my heart can be fully satisfied in him.
  • Believe in Jesus.  Believing in Jesus means trusting his promises.  And the promises I need now are 1 Peter 5:8; Jeremiah 32:40; and James 1:5.  I’m going to pray over these promises until my faith is strengthened.  Because then I will have fullness of joy, because all my heart-thirsts will be satisfied in Christ himself.

Join me.

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(Picture is from Microsoft Publisher Clipart.)

Category: God's Promises


2 Responses

  1. Paul Walton says:

    “And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that having all sufficiency in all things at all times, you may abound in every good work.” 2 Cor. 9:8

    God’s grace is able to meet all our needs, as Paul tells us in 2 Cor. having sufficiency to satisfy us in all things at all times. If we are emotionally crippled from a heart that is unable to rejoice in suffering, we can’t be an effective witness of God’s power.

    Christ is more than able to meet and satisfy all of our heart’s desire, because we are more than just spiritual creatures, we have a will and emotions (soul) that cry’s out for a purpose.

    And our purpose is to glorify God in the earth, and half-hearted unsatisfied people can’t glorify all that Christ is, He is Lord over all of our lives, including our mind, will, and emotions. And He can, and will completely satisfy all who fully trust in Him.

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